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  • Writer's pictureKids Kabin

How some students became our teacher!

As you might remember, earlier this year Kids Kabin welcomed a group of postgraduate students from Northumbria University to put forward ideas for how we can tell our story more effectively at Kids Kabin.

This work was the first stage in a Kids Kabin internship, which saw two Design Communications students Louis Morrison and Karine Haggag – join us for six weeks to help us develop some of these ideas further.

A panel made up of three photographs showing two graduate interns wotking with children and staff at Kids Kabin
Our graduate interns, Louis and Karine, working with staff and kids over the spring

On day one of the project in April, Louis, who is originally from South London and is passionate about diversity, representation and using his graphic design and multimedia skills for social good, had prepared some simple, paper-based materials to try some stop-motion animation with the kids, using bobby pins to make characters in their own flip books.

He said: “This is exciting because it’s new, and I know there's a lot of experience to be gained from that. It feels good because as a designer I sometimes have imposter syndrome, and nearly scrapped a couple of the ideas before they were chosen by Kids Kabin for development."

Louis and Karine's tutor, Jamie Steane, an Associate Professor at Northumbria's School of Design added: "This internship opportunity was invaluable to our students, as their undergraduate studies were disrupted by Covid-19, so this was one of the first times they'd had a chance to apply their design know-how and skills in a live situation. Seeing how they adapted to Kids Kabin and grew as young creatives was really pleasing."

Now the project is in its late stages, with lots of new design elements that Kids Kabin is working out how to use in future, so the team took a moment to reflect on how it's gone.

Karine, who admits she felt apprehensive about working with kids to start with, but in the end found attending Kids Kabin a weekly escape where she could bring out her childish side, said: "It’s been very fulfilling. Being around the kids weekly really informed the outcomes and the work I was doing, and helped me feel a lot more connected to it..

"It was surprising to see how in tune with everything the kids are. It was interesting to see how what we planned changed based on their preferences, and what they were willing to do they were a lot more opinionated than I expected, and I found that letting them take the lead made it more fun."

Louis, who said his biggest surprise during his time at Kids Kabin was how grown up the kids are, added: "It’s been fun being able to dive into an area you’ve never worked in and get a first-hand insight into what it might be like working with clients for the rest of my career.

"Getting hands on is quite fun and is something I don’t really have a chance to do in my day-to-day life. Even last week being in a wood workshop – that is so different from being behind a screen, and something I miss from being younger."

And Will, our Chief Executive, added: “The Northumbria design internship has been very successful and it’s been amazing having two talented young designers at Kids Kabin. They've helped us look at our branding, identity and the presentation of information in new and different ways.

"They've also been happy to speak to and work with children, parents and the team. A huge thank you to Karine, Louis, and the team at Northumbria University School of Design. The impact of the work will continue long into the future, and we look forward to working with Northumbria University more in the coming years.”

You'll begin to see elements created as part of the internship used in our communications over the coming months, and we can't wait to hear what you think. Let us know!


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